Here at Jadu, mental health in the workplace is really important to us. Several of our colleagues are undertaking a Mental Health First Aid Course, and we wanted to introduce you to our newest Mental Health First Aider, Dave Wardrop.
Dave, our Account Executive, tells us a little bit about why it’s important that more people are trained as Mental Health First Aiders.
“Personally I have suffered from several mental health issues in my life so far, this has ranged from PTSD to suicidal ideation, going through these challenges has been difficult and it has been hard, often the hardest part is accepting that you need help. Sometimes it is actually any level of recognition from others that you need help, Having been through this I don’t want another person to have to feel the way that I have, or to have some of the thoughts that I have had. To me being a mental health first aider gives me the confidence to be able to approach anyone and openly discuss if they having difficulties and if they would like to talk about it in a confidential, non-judgemental way.”
We all have mental health. Sometimes it isn’t as good and healthy as we would like it to be. Better mental health is beneficial for everyone and if we can acknowledge and recognise this, it is better for the places we work, our family and friends, and society overall.
Our mental health, just like our physical health, can rise and fall at different periods of life depending on our circumstances and what is happening in our lives. In any given year, 1 in 4 of us will suffer a mental health crisis. It is important to recognise that this is a high number and understand that sometimes, it is ok to not be ok. We will openly talk about having a cold or flu, breaking a bone, or having an upset tummy, but we often don’t open up about our mental health challenges. It shouldn’t be this way. We at Jadu believe in zero stigmas surrounding mental health, as it should be openly discussed and supported. It is nothing to be ashamed of.
So you have an idea of the scale of the problem, here are some mental health facts:
- In the UK, 17.5 million working days are lost due to poor mental health and no workplace support.
- Research by Deloitte estimates the total cost to UK bosses for mental health not being supported in the workplace is £43 billion.
- The biggest killer of men under 45 is suicide.
- A fifth of adults have thought about taking their own life at some point.
- People that identify as LGBTQ+ are two or three times more likely to experience a psychological or emotional problem and are at a higher risk of a range of mental health problems, including depression, suicidal thoughts, self-harm, and alcohol and substance misuse.
- 1 in 7 will experience a mental health problem in the workplace.
We spend approximately a third of our lives and half of our waking hours at work. Feeling comfortable and supported enough to speak to someone where you spend such a large portion of your life is vital. At Jadu, we have Mental Health First Aiders to help our employees feel supported and comfortable at work, and to show we understand mental health is something we all experience highs and lows in.
1 in 5 people in the UK have taken a day off due to stress or another mental health issue, but 90% feel unable to tell their employer the actual reason for their absence, pretending they have a stomach bug or cold instead. Our mental health first aiders are equipped with the skills needed to support both their own and others wellbeing, how to listen in a non-judgemental way, break down barriers, offer support and catch-ups if needed and signpost and encourage the professional support for recovery that is available. Most importantly, they are people who will listen to you regardless of what you want to discuss. No topic is ‘silly’.
Every mind matters, and so does every life. We will continue to try and make our little bit of the world a happier, more open and better-supported place because we care about our employees, our customers, our partners and society overall.
Open up a discussion at your place of work about what your employer is doing to support better mental health. Do you have a mental health first aider? If not, why not? If we can all open up and feel supported we can make the world a better place and make it a world in which it is truly ok not to be ok sometimes.
If you are a Jadu employee, book in time with Dave for a confidential chat here: https://app.hubspot.com/meetings/dave-wardrop
Or, for more information, visit the Mental Health First Aid England website.